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Thriondel Half-Elven
08-02-2008, 11:40 PM
Hello all,

I have just recently purchased the 4th edition rule books. But i have only one problem. . . Where do i start?

I don't have much experience with DnD in general so any help here would be greatly appreciated. Luckily i am starting a gaming group in which everyone has played DnD, but not for a long time and never in 4th ed. With the exception of one player who has never played, ever.

So any help would be appreciated.

Thanks,

Thriondel Half-Elven

ronpyatt
08-03-2008, 12:59 AM
After you've read through the DMG and PHB, create a few 1st level characters and put them up against kobolds to help you get familiar with the combat system.
Keep in mind that players familiar with previous versions will have to adjust to the new system. 4e is not the same game as the previous D&D's. Approach it like it is a new gaming system.

Stormhound
08-03-2008, 08:34 AM
Pretty much what Ron said...

The mini-adventure from the DMG makes a decent starting point. It also introduces players (and the GM!) to the more tactical nature of the rules; make sure especially to take advantage of bull-rushing PCs into the ooze pits, and they'll quickly pick up on it and have great fun returning the favor. (I also added an outdoor battle with kobolds before the 1st book encounter just to give us all practice without the extra terrain fun).

I also gave my players a "reboot" option; they made their own characters, but I told them that after the first adventure they could retool or even reroll if they decided that their initial choice just wasn't as fun as it seemed. I compare it to a pilot episode in TV...some of the characters or actors may change before the main show, but it's still going to be the same show.

Thriondel Half-Elven
08-03-2008, 12:53 PM
Thanks Ron for the practice combat idea. i never thought of that.

and thanks Stormhound. I like the "reboot" option. that seems like it would make for a better game in the end. I don't think a player with a PC they don't like will have much fun.

Thanks both of you.

Any tips on a "next step"?

Christopher_rowe
08-03-2008, 09:00 PM
I found it very useful to take the errata (as released so far) and go through and "update" my books before I even closely read them. This gave me a general familiarity with the shape and scope of the system and of the books themselves, added some vocabulary to my sight register, and also ultimately kept me from having to unlearn anything (particularly in the non-combat encounters section of the DMG, which changed quite a bit). As a bonus, it gave my books the marked up, personalized vibe that I like even before I really got started.

Thriondel Half-Elven
08-04-2008, 04:27 PM
thanks chris. Where do i fing the errata? is it just on the WoTC site?

Christopher_rowe
08-04-2008, 04:56 PM
thanks chris. Where do i fing the errata? is it just on the WoTC site?

Heh, I guess that would have been helpful, eh? The page that houses the errata is here (http://wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/4news/20080716). Apparently another round is coming soon with some updates particularly to the stealth rules (which are already updated on DDI's Compendium).

Maelstrom
08-04-2008, 05:16 PM
Any tips on a "next step"?

Don't bite off more than you can chew. Just learn what you need to know now, and then add in little bits here and there as you master previous skills.

In the beginning, the best thing to learn is how to use the encounter tables and preset encounters found in the MM to develop challenges equivelant to the levels of the characters.

Then start to explore new options and create your own challenges, letting the players learn that D&D really shines when they use creative approaches to solve challenges.

Something fun to do early on is introduce the players to a really bad bad guy, that will be behind a lot of bad stuff going on in the lands. Tie every encounter to him/her somehow, and let the players meet him/her on occasion (but not kill him/her right away). This will get the players interested in getting rid of their enemy, and give them something to look forward to each session as they get closer to that goal.

Thriondel Half-Elven
08-05-2008, 08:13 PM
Thanks Maelstrom,

i do tend to try and do too much at once. The bad guy idea is really clever.

What exactly is the "encounter tables and preset encounters"?

ronpyatt
08-06-2008, 03:44 AM
The monster manual has preset combat encounters at the end of each monster section. Choose a level appropriate for your group. I think reading chapter 3 in the DMG (starts on page 34) will help you get a grasp for the combat encounters. Chapter 5 (start on page 70) will get you familiar with non-combat encounters. When you're ready to create your own encounters jump over to Chapter 4 (start on page 52) and follow the guidelines for building your own. It's a bit involved, so I'd recommend using the preset before diving in to making your own.

Thriondel Half-Elven
08-06-2008, 03:34 PM
I just want to say thanks to everyone who has helped me with my small problems. you guys are great!

Maelstrom
08-06-2008, 03:48 PM
Let us know how it goes!

gdmcbride
08-07-2008, 01:51 AM
So you want to start running a new D&D 4th edition campaign?

Here's my advice:

1. Download "Rescue at Rivenroar" from WotC's site. It is currently the best 4th edition introductory adventure on the market (which isn't saying much) and it's free.

http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/duad/20080711

Note: you'll need to setup a free D&D Insider account to get this file.

2. Read the adventure thoroughly so you're familiar with the plot.

3. Have your friends create characters preferably while you are there. Always try to establish why the characters know each other and how they are connected to the plot. Maybe make them related to one of the people who get abducted in "Rescue".

4. Reward anyone who will turn in a full page background on their character (typed) or who keeps an in-character journal with a 50 XP bonus. Read the best excerpts from these journals at the beginning of the next session. This gets them thinking about your game between sessions and keeps them interested and involved.

5. Have fun. You're not just playing D&D together. Your getting together with friends. Order pizza! Don't be afraid of a few jokes and humorous digressions. Keep the game moving but remember anything that contributes to the fun is a good thing.

Gary

Tamerath
08-07-2008, 01:49 PM
So you want to start running a new D&D 4th edition campaign?

Here's my advice:

1. Download "Rescue at Rivenroar" from WotC's site. It is currently the best 4th edition introductory adventure on the market (which isn't saying much) and it's free.

http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/duad/20080711

Note: you'll need to setup a free D&D Insider account to get this file.

2. Read the adventure thoroughly so you're familiar with the plot.

3. Have your friends create characters preferably while you are there. Always try to establish why the characters know each other and how they are connected to the plot. Maybe make them related to one of the people who get abducted in "Rescue".

4. Reward anyone who will turn in a full page background on their character (typed) or who keeps an in-character journal with a 50 XP bonus. Read the best excerpts from these journals at the beginning of the next session. This gets them thinking about your game between sessions and keeps them interested and involved.

5. Have fun. You're not just playing D&D together. Your getting together with friends. Order pizza! Don't be afraid of a few jokes and humorous digressions. Keep the game moving but remember anything that contributes to the fun is a good thing.

Gary

This is some really good advice. I took a "gander" at the adventure just now and I gotta say it really isn't a bad adventure at all. It starts starts you off slow, and gives you really cool encounters throughout (I might even steal an idea or two from it). And Gary's #5 is a MUST...have a wonderful time

Thriondel Half-Elven
08-07-2008, 03:14 PM
That list is great Gary. i am pulling up the adventure now. I will let everyone know how it all goes

gdmcbride
08-07-2008, 05:49 PM
Glad to be of service and good gaming!

Hopefully, the intro 4th edition adventure market will be better after Gencon. Goodman Games is debutting four introductory adventures there, so hopes are high.

Gary

Thriondel Half-Elven
08-07-2008, 08:50 PM
i'll be on the look out for those. thanks again

Thriondel Half-Elven
08-08-2008, 10:09 PM
just wanted to let everyone know that i ran some practice combat rounds. Went pretty well. except one of my players, a dwarven wizard, apparently rolled horribly. or at least miss place some bonuses. In the long run he couldn't hit the kobold with a spell and then couldn't hit him with his warhammer when the beast closed in.

after a few practice sessions we decided it would be better if he started over and remade his character. he is now a dwarven cleric (which the party needed!)

Chi
08-08-2008, 10:30 PM
I think it is very important that you are not overly strict with your rules. Like the no laughing must stay in charector at ALL times, just ends up pissing peolpe off. Especially when they are new, you said you have a new player. And Mountain Dew helps you stay up all night long:biggrin:

Thriondel Half-Elven
08-08-2008, 10:35 PM
i agree with the rules not being overly strict. but it's easy for things to get out of hand. A joke hear or there is fine. but i think there is always a way to make it "in character". Not much a Dew fan. my blood pumps with natural addrenaline all the time.

Chi
08-08-2008, 10:40 PM
Yea that is true depending on who you are with

Thriondel Half-Elven
08-08-2008, 10:47 PM
ya sometimes you end up with a jerk in your group. not fun. they don't seem to know when to stop. when it stops being funny and is just annoying